Senior Scott Goodwin became Carolina's career leader in shutouts Friday night as UNC (5-1-1, 2-0-1 ACC) downed Virginia (4-3-1, 1-1-0 ACC), 1-0.
In a physical match that saw 41 combined fouls and five yellow cards issued, Carolina controlled the tempo throughout the match before breaking the deadlock just minutes into the second half.
Josh Rice won a goal kick off the foot of Goodwin just beyond midfield for the Tar Heels to start the run. Danny Garcia chased down the free ball on the right flank and fed a pass through the Virginia defense.
Andy Craven ran onto the Garcia offering and was one-on-one with the keeper. Craven charged at the keeper before firing from six yards out.
Craven's shot slipped through the keeper's legs and into the back of the net to put Carolina in front, 1-0, in the 47th minute.
The goal was Craven's third of the season, the second-highest total on the team, while Garcia registered his team-leading fifth assist of the year.
Carolina controlled possession throughout the first half as Virginia was held without a shot until the 26th minute when Will Bates put one on frame. Goodwin was there to easily corral the Cavalier attempt.
Craven came off the bench early in the first half and nearly made a very quick impression. On the ensuing corner kick Craven came charging into the box and connected on a one-time volley that sailed just over the bar and out for a goal kick.
The teams would enter the halftime break knotted at 0-0 as neither team could gain an advantage.
Craven's strike just after halftime pushed the momentum further in Carolina's direction as the Tar Heels continued to push forward looking for an additional tally.
The second half quickly turned into a very physical contest after the opening goal, as the Cavaliers were issued three yellow cards in a span of 11 minutes and the Tar Heels were called for 16 second half fouls.
Virginia put three shots on frame in the second half in search of the equalizing goal but Goodwin stepped up each time.
The Tar Heel defense recorded their fifth shutout of the year and have allowed just one goal during the run of play this season.
For Goodwin it was clean sheet number 29 for his career as he surpassed Michael Ueltschey's (1998-2001) career mark of 28.5 to claim the Carolina record. Goodwin also lowered his career goals against average to 0.61, the lowest mark in Carolina annals.
Up next for the Tar Heels is a visit from Wofford on Tuesday, Sept. 25 at Fetzer Field, kickoff is set for 7 p.m.